Joe Exotic scripted series based on Tiger King gets green light in the US

NBC Universal has commissioned a series starring Kate McKinnon as Carole Baskin.

Credit: Netflix

NBC Universal Television has ordered a multi-platform scripted television series, Joe Exotic, based on the hit Netflix docu-series Tiger King.

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Although it’s called Joe Exotic, the series will be based around the character of Exotic’s nemesis, Carole Baskin, played by Saturday Night Live star Kate McKinnon.

Netflix’s Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness premiered in March and the seven-episode series about the feud between two big cat operations in Oklahoma has become one of the TV sensations of 2020.

According to Variety, in Joe Exotic Big Cat Rescue director Baskin will learn that fellow animal lover Joe “Exotic” Schreibvogel is breeding and using his cats for profit, much like the Netflix documentary itself.

Baskin will try to shut down the Tiger King’s zoo, but the rivalry will escalate quickly and Exotic will set out to expose her hypocrisy by publicising her own troubled past.

Baskin explained in the The Pet Show podcast with Dennis Quaid and Jimmy Jellinek from AudioUp that McKinnon had not thus far “reached out” to her.

“I really hope that she does before she gets too far down the line with it,” she said. “I’d love to know what her take is on it and what she’s thinking to do and see if there was any way we could advise her. We reached out to her through the media — because I don’t have any way of contacting Kate McKinnon — but we had posted publically that we really hope that her or anybody that does any kind of follow-up programming doesn’t end up doing what Cardi B did and hiring people that are exploiting and abusing cats. It’s like the worst thing you can do is abuse cats to show other people that you shouldn’t abuse cats.”

NBC appears to have beaten a rival CBS production, rumoured to star Nicolas Cage, to the punch. That series was reported to be based on the Texas Monthly article Joe Exotic: A Dark Journey Into the World of a Man Gone Wild, by Leif Reigstad.

Joe Exotic will be broadcast on NBC, plus NBC’s new streaming service Peacock and USA Network.

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It’s not yet clear if it will be available in the UK.

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